Doctors at Wockhardt Hospital in Mumbai Central, performed a living donor liver transplant surgery on a nine-months-old baby boy named Kavya Raut. Kavya weighs 5.6 kg and hails from Gholwad village in Palghar District.
He has become the youngest baby who underwent a liver transplant surgery in western India. A team of doctors, led by Dr Anurag Shrimal, Consultant Abdominal Organ Transplantation, an HPB surgeon, performed the surgery.
Kavya’s mother donated a part of the liver to him. He underwent a 14-hour surgery on June 14. Now, Kavya has recovered and is ready to get discharged.
Kavya’s trouble began with birth, as he was born with a disease called Biliary Artesia. In this disease, the patient’s bile ducts that carry bile from the liver to the intestine, are narrow, blocked, or absent. At the age of two months, he underwent a major surgery (Porto-enterostomy) at a hospital in Mumbai.
The surgery failed, and he ended up with permanent damage of liver – cirrhosis of liver. He stopped growing, his weight got stagnant at 5-6 kg, developed jaundice, and fluid in his belly. Also, he had a couple of life-threatening infections. By the time his parents, Vivek and Nisha, who are daily wagers in their early 30’s, got him to Wockhardt, the family exhausted all their financial resources.
Dr Lalit Verma, a Consultant Paediatric Hepatologist at Wockhardt Hospital, Mumbai Central, said, “We started treating Kavya when he was just six months old. He had already developed cirrhosis of liver by then. With medial measures, we tried very hard to stabilise him and let him put on some weight. However, he landed up with infections and the only treatment left with us was a timely transplant.”
Dr Anurag Shrimal, who led the doctor’s team, said, “Liver transplantation in children less than ten kgs is technically very challenging. In Kavya’s case, due to previous surgery, the entire small and large intestine was densely stuck to the liver. We had very carefully separated these adhesions ensuring that there is no damage to the intestines and with a minimal blood loss as this kid cannot tolerate even 300-400 ml of blood loss.”
He added further, “We removed the entire diseased liver. We harvested a small portion of the mother’s liver, weighing 260 grams. Even that was too big for Kavya. We further reduced the harvested liver using special techniques to 210 grams. We then implanted this part of the liver in Kavya’s body by joining tiny blood vessels (3-5 mm in diameter). On reperfusion (restarting the blood flow), the liver started functioning immediately.”
Kavya’s parents, Nisha and Vivek, busted in tears of joy and couldn’t express their happiness in words, as their child has got a new life. Vivek Raut, Kavya’s father, said, “Kavya proved that he is a strong boy, he tolerated the surgery and anaesthesia very well.”